Tuesday, December 11, 2007

My Real FLR

Trial by an Old City

We were looking for a restaurant in a town with which we were unfamiliar. MW was already stressed over a hard day of sight seeing and not wanting to visit publicly available restroom facilities. I think that she was also becoming impatient with me over a mild physical impairment that I have (a comment by MW is, "My Pet is NOT intuitive").

She was helping me to navigate while I drove. Traffic was heavy. The old town had narrow streets that end in unexpected ways. Intersections were encountered every few hundred yards with traffic signals in unusual positions, and turning lanes at strange angles that restricted maneuverability. While I was trying to negotiate all that she pointed and exclaimed,

“Turn to the right here!”

We were in a lane from which I would have had to merge into fast moving traffic before making the turn. I could not see the mirror on the right side, because her arm was blocking it as she was pointing. She yelled again,

“Why don’t you listen to me? I said to turn right here!”

I slowed down, taking a chance on holding up traffic behind me. After seeing the right side rear view mirror again I eased between vehicles in the right turn lane. After that I had barely enough time, but I did make the requested turn.

I don’t know how the average man would handle this situation, but I can see some scenarios:

“Get your ‘…’ hand out of the way so I can see the ‘…’ mirror,”


“Quit yelling at me, I know where I’m going!”

And, this exclamation would be followed by more elevated-volume verbal exchange, sulking, demonstration of active and passive aggression, and reciprocal bad feelings. What did happen was that we both had a good laugh after I made the right turn indicated by her, and explained my position,

“I was trying, but your helping right arm was not helping: I could not see the

MW is not a person who would yell at me about ninety-eight percent of the time. She never shouts. This was a case when she had been under stress, and I realized that. Retaliation from me for being offended would have been childish and inappropriate. There is something profound about this realization. I admit that it is very appropriate for a man (me) to just shut up and do what I can within the context of an FLR. But it is also very appropriate of any person to do just what I did. Regardless of what stylized relationship we have, being polite, understanding, and rational under stressing circumstances gets the job done with minimal damage.

My demonstration of our encounter has a point. I was not always this understanding and forgiving. Growing into an FLR helped me to realize that kindness is a trait that serves both participants. Instead of expecting your partner to be kind, you be kind yourself. It is mushy stuff, but it works.

Our Vacation that Did and Did not Work

We both looked forward to relaxation after and between stressing times of holidays, relatives’ visit, and other matters. In a way, the vacation did work. We drove through God’s country most of the way. The stormy weather made everything look different, dynamic, frightening. We were safe in our reliable four-wheel-drive monster even if snow storms were to be had. We enjoyed the trip very much because of the beauty of the country, the weather, and our sharing their appreciation. Once at the resort at our destination we were adequately set up for the duration. We enjoyed revisiting old memories and forming new ones. The one thing that did not happen was becoming completely relaxed.

I will give you an example. Before leaving, following her direction, I packed our toys in a cardboard box. After arrival I left the box in the vehicle in anticipation of putting less stress on MW. I figured that if the toys are not blatantly exposed, she would ask for them when she was ready. After the first couple of days I knew that she would not be ready while we were there. There was something that held her attention such that she was unable to relax. I did not push, instead, I tried to set her more at ease, and so went the rest of the week at our vacation spot.

The trip back was also beautiful, relaxing, and at least from my vantage, enjoyable. We did encounter some disturbing situations once we were home, and that did not help. Now, the second day at home, we are still skirting issues of who is who, and who does what. We did have a talk this morning about this while sipping my excellent coffee. She wants to re-group, and take charge as she used to do. We will see.

Meanwhile I am still without explicit sex. Yes, we share tender moments, we lie together and enjoy each other’s warmth, scents, and feelings, but nothing gets done. I understand that she is not ready for sex. But why does not she allow me release in some way? I don’t think that I am being punished. She has not complained or tried to change my way. It is more like I am being ignored because there are more urgent matters for her to attend. Yes, I miss sex, but I don’t push her, because I know that she will eventually do what is right.

She is a sweet person who cares for all beings. It just so happens that I am only one of those beings, so I must wait my turn.

On Hold for Now

I know that I hinted of continuous and kinky sex, piercings, etc., and I did not deliver. I could have simply written one of my fantasies and present it as reality. Believe me, I can do that! But I did say early in my blog that I would always “Tell the truth, some of the truth, and nothing but the truth,” unless I say explicitly otherwise.

Our FLR is still intact, but one might say that it is on hold. We have no intention of giving it up. However, some of the features of FLR have been missing these few days. We had a situation waiting for us involving our son as we came home. This situation could turn out badly and we are now dealing with it. Then another matter came up that is independent of the first, but gave additional grave concern to MW. Under the circumstances I can not blame her for taking a vacation from her position of authority.

Although I am completely ready to anything and everything that we did before, I need to be realistic. I feel somewhat guilty because I have not been doing all the work that I usually do, at least not on time. For example, vacuuming, mopping, cleaning the toilets, windows, etc. They get done, but not on a regularly scheduled basis as they did before. It feels like nobody is in charge. I also have some pressing matters. I always deal with financial matters because MW considers those my domain which is all right with me. We do make decisions together, but I have the details to implement.

Well, one of these details has turned out messy. Before leaving on vacation I wrote a sizeable check on an account that was assumed to be as good as gold, and deposited the check onto my regularly used checking account. Confident that we were covered, we used the checking account for most of our expenses while on vacation. Upon my return I also paid some bills from the same account. After mailing the paid bills I listened to my answering machine that had been collecting calls over the last ten days. A call from the bank informed me that the sizeable check that I deposited was returned because it was written on a closed account. Being Saturday, I had to wait until Monday to track down the reason for this, and also to call the bank and explain that I did not write a bad check on purpose. It is all straight now, but my checking account balance is down near zero, and I have to wait with any purchases until I can re-deposit the funds, which will be a few days from now. Of course, this does not mean that I could not “get it up” at a moment’s notice if MW felt the need for my services (hint).

This may take a while to sort out. One positive thing about this is that MW may be snapping at me from time to time, but we have not had an argument or a fight. We are not dispassionate, far from it. We just are able to ride the white waters on the inner-tube of life with some semblance of dignity while our buns bounce on the rocks below. It is just a matter of time before we regroup. If I don’t post any juicy details, it is because they are yet to occur, so hang in there. We will be back. (MW says, "Yes, indeed").

1 comment:

whatevershesays said...

I think your post is what we all know though sometimes don't want to admit.......A WLM is just part of life. It isn't some fantasy. The ups and downs of marriage occur in ALL marriages, wife led and otherwise.

Your even temperment is a real testament to yourself and the love you have for your wife. Keep up the good work!!